Vocal exercises – you hear about them in acting and how some radio and TV personalities do it before a broadcast. But do you as a podcaster warm up your vocal chords?
It’s important to do so – not only to have your mouth and throat loose but also to make you feel more confident in your show. It’s like warming up before a 5k race – you don’t start cold and you feel like you are just slipping into the vocals.
Open your mouth slightly and say “AAAAHHH” for as long as you can. This does two things: 1 it shows you how much breath you have in your system and 2. it warms up your chords with a slight vibrating tone.
This also helps you with breathing. It also makes you aware of if you are “hissing” your S. Follow this by repeating the tongue twister “Sally Sells Seashells by the Seashore”. Try to numb the “s” sound when you repeat the twister.
8. Pop, Pop, Bop
Same thing, you are testing your “P” sound so you don’t pop the microphone. Repeat “Peter Piper Picked a Peck of Pickled Peppers”. Try to mute the “P” in the phrase. Also try to do the opposite – doing something extreme might give you an idea of how to counter it.
7. Ha Ha Ha
This is another breathing exercise. It helps you talk from your abdomen. Be prominent when you say “HA HA HA”. Put your hand on your stomach to feel where that is coming from and replicate it with your speech.
6. DOOOOOWWWWWNNNNN and UUUUUP
This exercise helps you with your mannerisms. When you say down, let the tone of your voice go down. When you say up, let your tone go up.
5. They’re Their There
Not only do you need to know which one to use but also understand there is a right way to say it and wrong. Put each one in a sentence and notice how you pronounce the word. Here are three sentences you can read aloud:
- Where is their room?
- There have been differences
- They’re going to be late
4. Recite the Alphabet
This exercise is about pace. The idea is to say each letter in the exact same amount of time. Sometimes we group things together and rush the words. In the alphabet, we might say “ABCD” really fast, then take a pause to catch our breath to recite “EFG”.
A good helper is to take your hand and move it up and down like a conductor would. When your hand hits the bottom, recite the next letter. Recite a couple times with a brisk pace, then a slow pace.
3. Whisper the words out
Take a sentence and whisper it out. See how quiet your voice can go. Then repeat the sentence in a normal voice. You can even use a bold voice the third time. Once again, you are testing extremes to stay on track.
2. Boo-bie Boo-bie Boo-bie
This is a fun exercise. Say the word but be extreme with your mouth. Keep repeating the word until you cannot any longer. It strengthens your mouth muscles and is also a breathing exercise.
1. Tell a Joke
Find a joke you can tell right before you go on. Don’t switch jokes – tell the same one again and again. The idea is to master the joke and all it’s little nuances. After a few months you can feel free to change things up if you feel confident you have worked out the joke perfectly.
It might also make you laugh which is always a good way to start with a show.